Primary school pupils across Northern Ireland are taking a short break from their textbooks to participate in educational beef and lamb cookery demonstrations, ran by the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC).
In recent days Derryhale Primary School, just outside Portadown, welcomed the team to provide a cookery demonstration for P5 and P6 pupils.
LMC demonstrator Wenda Bristow carried out the demonstration at Derryhale. Wenda has been with the LMC for several years and has delivered countless cookery demonstrations to audiences of all ages.
Commenting on her experience, she said: “As a farmer’s wife I am very passionate about the role I have in LMC, promoting Farm Quality Assurance. The schools highly value the demonstrations we provide and are so thankful for the relationships we have cemented over the years.
“I do my best to have a good rapport with the students and plan the demonstration alongside their syllabus showing cooking skills and outlining nutritional benefits of beef and lamb in the diet.”
Mrs Vallelly, a teacher at Derryhale, said that the demonstration was a “fantastic experience”.
She said: “The children really loved it and were so engaged throughout. Wenda’s questions were brilliant and pitched at the right level to keep the children interested.
“She taught them so much about the Farm Quality Assured aspect of the meat she was using in such a child friendly way.
“The way she explained why she used the ingredients helped them to understand the importance of a balanced diet and the need to know where our food comes from.
“Because the children were involved in the whole process, they all tried the chilli beef pasta – even the fussy eaters were keen to try it!”
Lauren Patterson, LMC marketing and communications manager, said: “Having visited some participating schools, including Derryhale Primary School, I can say that it is hugely encouraging to see how engaged the young people are in the environment around them.
“Our demonstrators educate pupils about the Northern Ireland Farm Quality Assurance Scheme (NIFQAS) and the importance of looking out for the logo.
“Many of the pupils already recognise the logo and can share informed thoughts on the importance of buying local food and supporting local farmers. Pupils are enthusiastic and interested to learn more about the role that farming plays in producing food and the importance of beef and lamb as part of a balanced diet.”